Portsmouth Title Ambitions Dealt Substantial Blow

Portsmouth have been dealt a triple injury blow with three key players all set to miss the rest of the season.

The three players in question are Joe Morrell and Terry Devlin who both sustained injuries in Pompey’s 2-2 draw with Oxford United last Tuesday as well as defender Tom McIntyre who would be forced off on Saturday in their 4-1 win over Northampton Town.

McIntyre was in fact sent off on Saturday for a challenge which was wrongfully rewarded with a red card. That card has since been rescinded however the defender, who was making his debut for the club against Northampton will now be sidelined for far longer than expected.

Portsmouth manager John Mousinho has since told club media that the January signing came out of the challenge on the wrong side.

“We got the news from Tom’s scan that there was a fracture in the ankle and we’re looking at around 12-14 weeks for that.

“It’s a tough one to take after only just signing him and the fact he went into the challenge honestly, which showed from the red card being overturned.

The injury sustained by McIntyre added to an ever-growing list for the current table-toppers, one in which could scupper their promotion chances let alone their title chances.

Mousinho also confirmed that Joe Morrell, who was forced off in the draw against promotion-chasers Oxford United will now have to undergo surgery, which will also put an end to his season.

“With Joe, there was unfortunately a small piece of cartilage that chipped off his knee, so he’s in for surgery today [Thursday].

“That’s going to be him for the rest of the campaign, although the good news is that we feared it could be ligament damage, which would have seen him out for a lot longer.

It goes from bad to worse for the club, with Terry Devlin, who was also forced off in the game against Oxford expected to miss the rest of the season with a shoulder injury which was far worse than first thought, with Mousinho saying:

“Terry’s shoulder injury is a lot worse than we originally thought and he’s also set for surgery after landing on it awkwardly.

“We’re again looking at three-plus months for his recovery, so that will again take us through to the end of the season.

Currently sat at the top of the table, Portsmouth are in by no means a bad position and their form has really picked up lately. Four points clear of second-placed Derby County and a further point ahead of Bolton Wanderers in third, they are in a very strong position even with the two teams below having games in hand.

The current injury list does impact their title chances but the club did greatly strengthen in the January transfer window and they should have the replacements to deal with the current damage to the squad.

Writer’s View

After a couple of weeks of positivity for Pompey the trio of injuries does somewhat dampen the mood. That being said they should have the strength in their ranks to cope with the current injury crisis and their business in January showcases just that.

Travelling to bottom of the table Carlisle United on Saturday, anything less that all three points will come as a disappointment to the club. It does represent a great opportunity to further extend their lead at the top and Mousinho will expect his players to do just that. Players will need to step-up in order to get Portsmouth over the line, but given the quality in the squad, they should be able to get the job done.

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